Every year, schools across the United States take time off for Thanksgiving. While this break is a wonderful time to celebrate with family and food, it is important to recognize that not everyone thinks of Thanksgiving as a joyous occasion.
Thanksgiving may also recall the United State’s history of colonization, discrimination and violence against Indigenous and Native American communities. Expect Respect asks everyone to be aware that this holiday can be a painful time for many members of our community and to be mindful of the implications Thanksgiving has for many of your fellow students. We encourage you to commemorate Native American history and combat the colonial narrative this November by learning more about native cultures and communities.
The Multi-Ethnic Student Affairs (MESA) and the Native American Student Association (NASA) honor the histories, cultures and contributions of Native American communities during the month of November to celebrate Native American Heritage Month. They recognize and celebrate the rich history of Native and Indigenous communities in the United States through a variety of free educational events.
Sunday, November 12th (5:30pm-7:30pm): Annual Fall Feast at Trotter Multicultural Center. Join NASA for traditional Native American food, dancing, and games, and learn more about Native American culture!
Tuesday, November 14th (6:00pm-8:00pm): "Awake, a Dream from Standing Rock" Film Screening at the Munger Screening Room (G039) in Munger Graduate Residence Hall
Wednesday, November 15th (7:00pm-9:00pm): Eastern Michigan University: Cultural Art & Poetry Night at the EMU Student Center Intersection.
Friday, November 17th (6:00pm-7:30pm): Matika Wilbur Keynote Presentation at the Michigan Union, Kuenzel Room (1st Floor). Wilbur presents “19 Lessons from Indian Roads”, encouraging Americans to gain an awareness of Native American culture and its legacy.
Monday, November 27th (5:30pm-7:00pm): Talking Circle at Angell Hall, Room G115. Learn more about the relationship between the University of Michigan and surrounding Native American communities.
Thursday, November 30th (6:00pm-8:00pm): Eastern Michigan University: Boarding School: A Survivor's Story at EMU’s Halle Library, Room 300 (955 W Circle Drive, Ypsilanti, MI 48197)
For more information about Native American Heritage Month and these events, check out MESA’s website.
-Contributed by Gabe Colman & Yolanda Marti, Expect Respect